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America’s Dental Care Crisis
In the United States, low-income communities throughout the country are suffering from what many are calling an “oral health crisis.” Fluoridating water supplies is not a solution to this problem, as evident by the fact that oral health crises are occurring in virtually all urban areas — the vast majority of which have been fluoridated for decades. As is […]
Racial Disparities in Dental Fluorosis
In 2005, the Centers for Disease Control published the results of a national survey of dental fluorosis conducted between 1999 and 2002. According to the CDC, black children in the United States have significantly higher rates of dental fluorosis than either white or Hispanic children. This was not the first time that black children were found to suffer higher rates of dental fluorosis. At least five other studies — dating as far back as the 1960s — have found black children in the United States are disproportionately impacted by dental fluorosis.
The Oral Health Crisis
Water fluoridation is routinely proposed by public health officials as an effective way of preventing the high rates of tooth decay found in low-income populations throughout the United States. Fluoridation is presented as an equitable means of providing “dental care” to people in need of dental services. In reality, however, fluoridation does nothing to remedy […]
Civil Rights Leaders Call for Halt to Water Fluoridation
Because fluoride can disproportionately harm poor citizens and black families, Atlanta civil rights leaders, Andrew Young and Dr. Gerald Durley, have asked Georgia legislators to repeal the state’s mandatory water fluoridation law.
Risk Factors for Fluoride Toxicity in the Black Community
There are several risk factors for fluoride toxicity that are occur at elevated rates in the black community. These risk factors include: Reduced nutrient intake; Higher levels of lead exposure; Higher prevalence of health conditions that render the body more vulnerable to fluoride intake; and Higher intakes of fluoride.
Statements from Civil Rights Leaders
League of United Latin American Citizens The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the oldest Hispanic civil rights organization in the United States. In September 2011, LULAC passed a resolution opposing fluoridation at its annual conference. The resolution states that: 1) Current science shows that fluoridation chemicals pose increased risk to sensitive subpopulations, […]
Water Fluoridation, Tooth Decay, & Poverty
Most of the oral health crises occurring in the United States right now are taking place in low-income urban areas that have been fluoridated for decades. It is unclear, therefore, how fluoridation can be expected to prevent oral health crises in newly fluoridated areas when it has failed to prevent such crises in areas that have been fluoridated for 30 to 60 years.
Current data shows that low-income and minority communities are disproportionately harmed by water fluoridation programs. Fluoridation has thus become an issue of environmental justice, with a growing number of civil rights leaders calling for an end to the practice.